South Dublin County Council passes motion calling for a united Ireland

by Padraig Conlon

South Dublin County Council have passed a motion calling on the government to start planning for a united Ireland.

The motion, put forward to SDCC by Sinn Fein Councillor Mark Ward, was passed at yesterday’s council meeting.

As well as calling on the Irish Government to immediately plan for a United Ireland, the motion is also calling on the British Government to plan for a border poll. 

A similar motion was put forward in 2016 and passed by a majority.

There was some opposition to the motion from Fine Gael, Solidarity and Independents.

Speaking following the vote, Cllr Ward said public opinion seems to indicate any vote on Irish unity would be heavily in favour of unification.

“The British Brexit debacle raises the prospect of the six counties being taken out of the EU, against the will of a majority,” Ward said.

“The fact that Britain voted to leave the European Union must lead to a vote on a united Ireland.

“Economically, the north and south of this island are interlinked and interdependent. Countless numbers of jobs depend on an All Ireland economy with the free flow of people and goods essential for it to function”

“The reality of Brexit is that we could now have 26 counties on this island within the European Union and six counties outside.

“The consequences of this are self-evident in terms of the border and partition.

“AN RTÉ/TG4 exit poll after the last local and European elections indicated there is strong support for a united Ireland among Irish voters. 

“According to the exit poll, 77% of voters polled who chose a preference indicated they’d vote in favour of a united Ireland if a referendum was held tomorrow.”

Councillor Ward questioned how much preparation the Irish government is making to deal with a potential united Ireland.

“This Government are constantly telling us that they are planning for every eventuality of Brexit, I have yet to see any plans they have for a United Ireland,” he said.

“We need a comprehensive road map for a United Ireland.

“When a United Ireland does happen, and it will, the political landscape on this island will be transformed.

“A border poll will allow the people of the North to self determine their future in a democratic process.

“The 71% of the people in the North who voted in favour for the Good Friday agreement with the knowledge that it paved a pathway to a United Ireland through another democratic process. This process is a border poll.

“South Dublin County Council has a population of 285k people and us councillors are democratically elected to represent them.

“So with the weight of 285k people I am calling for this Council to support my motion to call on the Irish Government to immediately plan for a United Ireland and furthermore to ask the Minister to call on the British Secretary of State to plan for a border poll on Irish Unification”

“The Government has to begin planning for unity.”

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